As you dive deeper into your half marathon training plan, you’ll start to notice that your body, your car and your refrigerator have something in common…you depend on ALL of them to run PROPERLY, day in and day out.
Your Body Is Your Instrument
Following a half marathon training plan requires a lot of you, and specifically your body.
Your training volume has increased:
- You’re expending more energy
- You’re looking for new ways to restore that energy
- You’re spending a lot more time on your feet
- You’re sore!
- You’re starting to feel muscles you’ve never felt before
So how do you deal with these changes and keep your body in tip top shape through the worst of it?
Do NOT ignore your aches and pains!
What’s tight? What was feeling extra fatigued at the end of the last long run?
Avoid A Setback, Listen To Your Body
Take regular inventory of your body, and what’s hurting. It’s not a question of “if” but “where”.
REGULAR self maintenance is the KEY to succeeding in your half marathon training plan.
Let’s take a look at a few things you can do…
Your Feet Are Your Shock Absorbers
No matter how cushioned your running shoes are, your feet take the majority of the impact as you run.
As you get tired, you tend to lose your mechanics both in your posture and stride.
Though you may start tall with a focused foot strike, by mile 9 or so…things aren’t looking so pretty.
Your feet start to curl up tight in an effort to make each step more efficient.
The result? TIGHT foot muscles that light the fire for a whole chain of problems up the leg!
Grab a yoga tune-up ball, lacrosse ball, or anything similar in size and density.
With just a sock on, place the ball south of your big toe.
Begin rolling from the inside of your foot to the outside, in lateral rolls. Repeat 3-5 times.
Now move the ball slightly lower, closer to the arch, and repeat the lateral movements, rolling from inside to outside.
Continue all the way down the foot.
Spend about 1 minute on each foot, but for BEST results, roll out a couple of times a day!
Warming Up Is Not An Option, But A Requirement!
The best thing you can do for your body as you work through your half marathon training plan is to PREPARE it for the work ahead.
Never jump into a workout or run without at least a few minutes of solid warm up.
Combine a lateral lunge with a curtsy lunge for a dynamic warm up, guaranteed to prepare your hips and legs for efficient running mechanics.
Start standing tall on two feet.
Step out with your right leg to find a lateral lunge, sticking hips back and keeping feet parallel and facing directly front.
From bottom of the lateral lunge, push through heel of right leg to return back to neutral.
Instead of coming to two feet, cross the same leg that was extended back behind your left leg to create a “curtsy” lunge position.
From curtsy lunge, return to lateral lunge.
Repeat this motion from lateral to curtsy, 5-10 times per leg.
This exercise takes less than 2 minutes and does a GREAT job of waking up those glutes and hamstrings!
Here’s one more to try:
Start standing tall on two feet.
Sit the hips back to put hands down on ground in front of your feet.
Walk out with your hands to a straight arm plank position.
Perform one push-up (modification: press off knees).
At top of push-up, find a downward dog position.
From downward dog, walk hands back into feet and stand up tall.
Repeat 5-10 times.
This exercise is awesome for waking up the calves, ankles, core and hamstrings!
You Are Responsible For You
Remember…you are in the driver’s seat of this half marathon training plan!
Listen to your body, take action when something feels funky and you’ll run injury free for life!
And for sticking with us to the end, click HERE for a FREE 44-page training guide!